After serving as a combat medic and a nine-year stint as a metro area police officer and sergeant, Michael Rollin began his legal career at the international law firm of Arnold & Porter and was later a partner at Denver litigation boutique Reilly Pozner. Michael founded RBF Law with—as he likes to say—“the best lawyers [he] know[s]” and the singular idea of creating something truly original. RBF Law seeks to transform the business of law by redesigning law firm structure and economics—increasing efficiencies without compromising our high standards for the practice of law.
Central to RBF Law’s culture is that it lives its commitment to diversity and inclusiveness. RBF Law is strengthened by the life experiences of its members across ethnicities, native languages, sexual orientations, and genders. This is not only a matter of principle; the firm and its work are better for it.
In his personal practice, Michael is a trial lawyer and advisor to sophisticated in-house counsel and businesses of all sizes, across an array of industries. Michael and RBF Law litigate and provide strategic solutions to high-profile, multi-billion dollar disputes arising out of the 2008 financial crisis, principally as trial counsel for the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy estate, AIG, and other capital markets participants.
Michael is also lead, national counsel for AIG insurance and financial services companies protecting trade secrets and preventing unfair competition from competitors and former employees. RBF Law litigates these cases in courts and in FINRA and AAA arbitration across the country, regularly prosecuting and defending injunctions, and Michael appreciates the tactical use of injunction practice. Notably, this representation also goes back over a decade, demonstrating the strength of the relationships Michael builds with his clients.
Michael and RBF Law are often called upon to assist businesses and their current and former executives in connection with corporate break-ups and other complex commercial, financial services, securities, and bankruptcy-related disputes. And as a strategic advisor to long-time clients, Michael has the insight to anticipate and pre-empt potential disputes—and identify opportunities—in ways that most outside counsel do not.
RBF Law’s practice is both local and national, and Michael is licensed and regularly practices in New York, California, and Colorado, as well as numerous federal district, appellate, and bankruptcy courts. He has been ranked in Chambers USA, received an AV-Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell, has been recognized by Colorado Super Lawyers Magazine and Law Week, and identified by Super Lawyers magazine as a top securities litigator. Michael graduated first in his law school class at the University of Denver and earned his BA in Public Policy and Administration summa cum laude from the University of Colorado-Denver.
SPECIFIC AREAS OF PRACTICE
- Complex Commercial Litigation
- Financial Services
- Capital Markets
- Trade Secrets Litigation
- Appellate Law
Lead counsel to Lehman Brothers for litigation arising from Lehman’s purchase, sale, securitization, and servicing of residential mortgage loans. In this nearly decade-long partnership, Michael has been responsible for the defense of $80 billion in claims filed against the Lehman bankruptcy estate, including the establishment of the largest and most sophisticated loan-level reunderwriting and legal review project ever implemented in connection with the financial crisis. Michael also oversees and prosecutes hundreds of millions of dollars of indemnification claims for the benefit of the Lehman estate and its creditors.
Trial counsel in AIG’s opposition to Bank of America’s $8.5 billion RMBS settlement, which the trial judge called “the mother of all MBS suits,” (New York Law Journal, April 30, 2014), and to investors challenging aspects of the $4.2 billion JPMorgan Chase settlement.
Appellate counsel for amicus curiae in the landmark ACE Securities Corp. v. DB Structured Products, Inc. matter, in the New York Court of Appeals.
Successful protection of a pharmaceutical maker’s proprietary formulations.
Successful defense of allegations of unfair competition and trade secret misappropriation by competitors of a newly-founded medical device company and its employees.
Successful defense of a bet-the-company trademark infringement lawsuit.
- Ranked in Chambers USA
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated (5.0/5.0)
- Elite Boutique Trailblazer, The National Law Journal, 2017
- Colorado Super Lawyers, 2014-2017
- Top 100: 2015 Colorado Super Lawyers
- Local Litigation Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2017
- Local Litigation Star in Colorado – Plaintiff, Benchmark Litigation, 2014
- Colorado Rising Stars, 2010-2013
PROFESSIONAL AND COMMUNITY AFFILIATIONS
- Panel Member, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)
- Member, Colorado Women’s Bar Association
- Member, Colorado Bar Association
- Member, Denver Bar Association
- “Litigation Update: Focusing on Emerging Topics in RMBS,” Lecturer, Annual ABS Conference, Miami, FL (October 2013)
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “RMBS Trustees Defend $11.4B Breach Claim Against Lehman”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Lehman MBS Trial May Be Delayed After Claims Removal Row”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Lehman Faulty-Mortgage Suite Must Wait, FDIC Says”
- RBF Law Partner Michael Rollin Named an Elite Boutique Trailblazer by The National Law Journal
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Lehman Judge Signs Off on MBS Claims Estimation Deal”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Lehman Throws Support Behind RMBS Settlement”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “$2.4B Lehman RMBS Deal Draws Investor Side-Eye”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Lehman Deal Looks to End MBS Claims for Minimum $2.4B”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “BlackRock, Others Back $2B Deal with Lehman Estate”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law360 Article “Vague Terms Kills Banks’ Lehman Claims over 600K Mortgages”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law 360 Article “Lehman Sues Lenders Over Faulty Mortgage Sales”
- RBF Law Case Discussed in Law 360 Article “JP Morgan Agrees to $995 RMBS Deal with AMBAC Mid-Trial”
- RBF Law Featured in BusinessDen Article “Law Firm Builds Business on Fluctuating Staff”
- RBF Law Featured in Law Week Colorado Article “Doing Business as RBF Law”
ADMITTED TO PRACTICE
U.S. District Courts:
Southern, Eastern, and Northern Districts of New York
Central, Southern, Northern, and Eastern Districts of California
District of Colorado
Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas
Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin
Northern District of Florida
Western District of Texas
U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal:
Second, Third, Fifth, Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh
Southern District of New York
Central District of California
District of Colorado
University of Denver Sturm College of Law
J.D., Order of St. Ives, First in Class
University of Colorado at Denver
Bachelor of Arts, Summa Cum Laude